NRA Will Appeal Decision Denying Right-to-Carry Outside the Home
Vol. 19, No. 13 03/30/12

Posted on March 30, 2012

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NRA Will Appeal Decision Denying
Right-to-Carry Outside the Home

Late today, a federal district court in Illinois wrongly ruled that the Second Amendment does not protect a right to carry firearms for self-protection outside the home. The NRA funded this challenge to Illinois' ban on citizens' ability to carry firearms legally outside their homes and businesses for self-defense, and will also be supporting an immediate appeal to the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals-and to the Supreme Court if necessary.

The decision in the case of Shepard v. Madigan misreads the Supreme Court's Second Amendment decisions and will continue to deprive law-abiding Illinoisans of the right to protect themselves effectively against crime on the streets.  It also conflicts with a growing body of case law elsewhere in the country, where courts have increasingly recognized that the right to bear arms for self-defense doesn't end at Americans' front doors.

"The NRA's legal efforts will not end until the right to carry firearms for self-defense is fully recognized throughout our land," said NRA-ILA Executive Director Chris W. Cox.

For more information on this and other critical Second Amendment cases, please sign up for our free Legal Update newsletter at www.nraila.org/legalupdate.

Obama Whispers Speak LoudlyBy now, most of you have heard about President Barack Obama's unfortunate "slip-up" this week.  The President was speaking with outgoing Russian President Dmitry Medvedev ahead of a summit meeting on nuclear security.  Apparently, neither realized that their conversation was being picked up by a live microphone.  Read more..

Can't Trust the BATFE Brass:  Since the story first broke, we have featured many articles on the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives' now-infamous "Fast and Furious" gun-walking operation.  U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder and the Obama administration have yet to come clean on their role in the ill-fated scheme, engineered by Holder's Justice Department to blame our Second Amendment freedoms for Mexican drug cartel crime.  They have stonewalled and backpedaled at every turn, making it hard to believe what little information has been wrung out of them during investigative hearings.  Read more


  

Anti-Hunters ... You're Fired:  In 2010 Donald Trump, Jr., and his brother Eric Trump went on safari in Zimbabwe.  Photos from the safari were obtained without permission and posted online.  The hunt included elephant, Cape buffalo, leopard and crocodile.  The images drew the expected vitriol from anti-hunting extremists, such as PETA and other organizations that want to ban all hunting, regardless of where it is or who is doing it.  In response to those attacks Don tweeted, "I'm a hunter, for that I make no apologies."

To read more about this story, please visit the Keefe Report (a blog by Mark A. Keefe, Editor In Chief of NRA's The American Rifleman magazine), by clicking here.

Senator Udall Wants to Hear From You:  Because the expansion of America's urban and suburban areas has crowded out many shooting areas and made it increasingly difficult to find a place to shoot, last September, U.S. Sens. Mark Udall (D-Colo.) and Jim Risch (R-Idaho) introduced S. 1249, a bill that would help remedy this problem by promoting the construction and maintenance of target ranges on public lands.  In the U.S. House of Representatives, Reps. Heath Shuler (D-N.C.) and Duncan Hunter (R-Calif.) introduced a companion bill, H. R. 3065.  Read more

Grassroots Campaigning In a National Election Year:  Plan to attend this free training event at NRA's upcoming Annual Meetings in St. Louis, MO!

FREE

Friday, April 13, 2012
9:00 a.m. (Registration and free continental breakfast from 8:00 a.m. - 9:00 a.m.)
Renaissance St. Louis Hotel
800 Washington Avenue, Landmark Ballrooms 1-3, Lobby Level
St. Louis, MO 63101
(314) 621-9600
Read more…

Hunters' Rights Special Presentation at NRA Annual Meetings:  Threats to hunter's rights are escalating--and diversifying.  To see what you can do about it, please plan to attend a special presentation devoted to hunters' rights issues at this year's NRA Annual Meetings in St. Louis, MO.  Read more…

Grassroots News Minute Video
:  To view tonight's Grassroots News Minute, please click here:  
STATE ROUNDUP
  (Please note the only items listed below are those that have had recent action.  For other updates on state legislation, please go to the state legislation section at www.NRAILA.org, and check each week's issue of the Grassroots Alert.)

For additional information, please click on the links provided.

ALABAMA: Employee Protection Legislation Could be Considered by the Senate Next Week
This session, the NRA has supported crucial legislation in Alabama which, if enacted, would provide essential protections to employees who wish to exercise their right to self-defense on their way to and from the workplace.  Senate Bill 331 would prohibit certain businesses from establishing policies against persons transporting or storing firearms or ammunition in motor vehicles, provided that certain criteria are met.  SB 331 could be voted on by the Alabama Senate as early as next week and is in need of your active support.
 
ALASKA: Vital Self-Defense Legislation Needs Your Help
House Bill 80, self-defense legislation, passed in the state House at the end of last session, and was reported by the state Senate Judiciary Committee on March 23.  HB 80 is now pending in the Senate Finance Committee and will likely be heard there soon.
HB 80, introduced by state Representative Mark Neuman (R-15), is important self-defense legislation that would provide that a law-abiding person, who is justified in using deadly force in self-defense, has "no duty-to-retreat" from an attack if the person is in any place that that person has a legal right to be.

No-Net-Loss Bill Granted Hearing
House Bill 356, sponsored by state Representative Lance Pruitt (R-21) and eight other state Representatives, is a much-needed No-Net-Loss hunting protection bill.  No-Net-Loss laws create a base-line acreage of state public land that are always open to public hunting, guaranteeing that future generations have the same hunting opportunities that we enjoy today.  HB 356 will be heard by the state House Resources Committee this Monday, April 2, at 1:00 p.m. in Barnes 124.

ARIZONA: Governor Brewer Signs Law Allowing Suppressors for Hunting
On March 29, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer signed House Bill 2728 into law.  This important hunting bill will allow hunters in Arizona to use lawfully-possessed suppressors (also referred to as silencers) on firearms for hunting.  HB 2728 passed in the state House on February 28 by a 42 to 14 vote and in the state Senate on Tuesday by a 20 to 9 vote.

CALIFORNIA: Assembly Committee on Public Safety Update
Yesterday, the state Assembly Committee on Public Safety was scheduled to hear two anti-gun bills, Assembly Bill 1527 and Assembly Bill 2182.  AB 1527 was amended to limit its scope and was passed in the committee by a 4 to 2 vote.  AB 1527 will now go to the state Assembly Committee on Appropriations.  As introduced AB 1527, would expand on last year's ban on open carrying of an unloaded handgun to also include unloaded rifles and shotguns.  On a positive note, AB 2182, introduced by state Assembly Member Norma Torres (D-31), was pulled from the committee agenda.  AB 2182 would require that a person be arrested if they inadvertently attempt to bring a firearm through an airport TSA checkpoint and ban that person from entering that airport in the future.

NRA/CRPA-backed Pro-Gun Legislation Needs your Support Now
Last year, the NRA and its state affiliate, the California Rifle and Pistol Association (CRPA) supported Senate Bill 610, a major concealed carry policy revision, and it was enacted into law.  For 2012, the NRA and CRPA are supporting the following NRA/CRPA-initiated bills: Senate Bill 1367, Senate Bill 1567 and Senate Bill 1569.

Comments Needed to Keep National Forest Area Open to Shooters
For over fifty years, the Candy Rock Quarry in the Stanislaus National Forest has been open for recreational shooting.  This quarry is located in Calaveras County, near the towns of Hathaway Pines and Avery, and is one of the locations in the Forest's Calaveras Ranger District that is actively used by recreationists for target shooting.  The Forest Service recently issued a Notice of Intent to prepare an environmental impact statement to address whether recreational shooting is an appropriate activity at Candy Rock Quarry in the context of safety, public health, and applicable law and if it is, determine the conditions under which shooting may continue.

HAWAII: Immediate Action Needed on Instructor Liability Bill
House Bill 679, important NRA instructor liability protection legislation, MUST be heard in the state Senate Judiciary Committee by April 5 or it will die.  This legislation passed in the state House by a 47 to 4 vote on March 6 and is still languishing in the state Senate Judiciary Committee.  HB 679 would exempt firearms instructors certified by the National Rifle Association from liability for injury or damage caused by discharge of their firearms while providing training required to obtain a permit to acquire firearms.

IDAHO: Right to Hunt and Fish Constitutional Amendment Passes Senate and Will Be on November Ballot
On March 27, the Idaho Senate voted 31 to 3 to pass House Joint Resolution 2a, a much-needed constitutional amendment that would provide meaningful protections against anti-hunting activists who seek to ban all hunting in America.  HJR 2a passed the House on March 22 by a 63 to 4 vote.  HJR 2a will now be on the ballot for voter approval this November.

KANSAS: Governor Brownback Signs Important Hunting Bill into Law
On March 29, Kansas Governor Sam Brownback signed House Bill 2491 into law.  This important self-defense and hunting reform will allow hunters, fishermen, and fur harvesters to carry a handgun in the field.  HB 2491 passed in the state Senate unanimously on March 15 and in the House by an overwhelming 113 to 8 vote in February.

KENTUCKY: Two More NRA-Backed Bills Sent to the Governor
Following the passage of House Bill 500 last week, two more NRA-supported bills has been sent to Governor Steve Beshear for his approval. House Bill 484, a concealed carry exemption bill, passed by a near unanimous 37 to 1 vote yesterday. The other bill sent to the Governor also yesterday, House Bill 563, fraudulent firearms prevention legislation, passed by a unanimous 38 to 0 vote. It is now up to Governor Beshear to sign these three important pro-Second Amendment bills into law.

LOUISIANA: Right to Keep and Bear Arms Amendment to be Heard on Tuesday
On Tuesday, April 3, Senate Bill 303 will be considered by the Senate Judiciary "C" Committee. SB 303, introduced by state Senator Neil Riser (R-32), would improve the current provision in the state constitution and provide Louisianans the strongest and most comprehensive constitutional language of any state, guaranteeing our Right to Keep and Bear Arms in Louisiana for future generations.

MAINE: Emergency Powers Legislation Moving in Augusta
The Maine Legislature is moving on more pro-gun legislation in this session.  Legislative Document 1859 was voted "ought to pass" by the Joint Committee on Criminal Justice and Public Safety. LD 1859 will soon go to the floor of the state House of Representatives for consideration.  LD 1859, introduced by state Representative Michael Shaw (D- 102), "An Act to Protect Firearm Ownership during Times of Emergency," would simply clarify that, during any declared state of disaster or emergency, lawfully possessed, used, carried, transferred, transported, stored or displayed firearm or ammunition cannot be seized from law-abiding citizens.

MICHIGAN: Michigan House Judiciary Committee to Consider Repeal of Handgun Permit-to-Purchase and Registration
The Michigan House Judiciary Committee is reviewing an important and long-overdue bill that would eliminate the state handgun "permit-to-purchase" and registration requirements. Although a date has not been announced, House Bill 5225 will be heard in the House Judiciary Committee sometime after their spring recess.

NEBRASKA: Legislature Places Right to Hunt and Fish Amendment on 2012 Ballot
On March 27, the Nebraska Legislature passed NRA-backed Legislative Resolution 40CA, the Right to Hunt and Fish constitutional amendment, by a 41 to 3 vote.  This action places this issue on the general election ballot this November.  Introduced by state Senator Pete Pirsch (4), LR 40CA proposes an amendment to the Nebraska Constitution recognizing the citizens' right to hunt and fish.  It would provide meaningful protections against the anti-hunting extremists who seek to ban all hunting in America.

OKLAHOMA: NRA-Supported Oklahoma Pro-Gun Bills on the Move!
Thanks to your active support, Senate Bills 1760 and 1743 passed in the state Senate and will be heard next week by their respective state House committees.  Senate Bill 1760 is awaiting a hearing by the House Public Safety Committee.  This "Emergency Powers" bill is necessary to fill the current gap in the language Senate Bill 1743 has been referred to the House Agriculture, Wildlife, and Environment Committee.  Known as the "Landowner's Hunting Freedom Act," this bill would allow Oklahoma landowners and their guests to use lawfully-possessed suppressors (also referred to as silencers) on firearms for hunting. 

New Management Plan Underway for Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has announced the preparation of a new plan that will guide the management of the Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge for the next fifteen years.  The 20,800-acre refuge is located in Sequoyah, Muskogee, and Haskell Counties and was established on the Robert S. Kerr Reservoir as an overlay of a US Army Corps of Engineers' project expressly for migratory waterfowl.  Hunting and fishing are the largest public uses on the Refuge.  The Service is asking the public to submit suggestions and comments on the scope of issues to consider during the planning process.  Public comments are being accepted until April 10 and can be sent online to SequoyahNWRCCP-EIS@fws.gov.  For further information, you may contact Refuge Manager Jeff Haas at 918-773-5251 ext. 29.  In its announcement, the Service noted that there are members of the public who want hunting and fishing reduced or eliminated, so it is imperative that hunters and anglers send the Refuge comments in support of maintaining, and even expanding, access and opportunities for hunting and fishing on the Sequoyah.

OREGON: CHL Confidentiality Bill Awaits Governor's Approval
On March 2, the state House concurred with Senate amendments to House Bill 4045, a Concealed Handgun License (CHL) confidentially bill, by a 54 to 6 vote.  The House originally passed HB 4045 on February 15 by a 44 to 14 vote and the state Senate passed this bill by a 24 to 5 vote.  HB 4045 is now with Governor Kitzhaber for his consideration.

Hunting to be Expanded in Plan for Malheur National Wildlife Refuge
A plan that will guide management of the 187,000-acre Malheur National Wildlife Refuge for the next fifteen years has been released to the public for comment.  Located in Harney County, the Refuge was established by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1908 to protect colonial nesting bird populations and is managed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS).  The Refuge is currently open to hunting, but the USFWS intends to expand existing hunt opportunities.  Under Alternative 2, the preferred action alternative, upland game hunting would open three weeks earlier than under the current program.  Existing waterfowl hunt areas would be tremendously expanded by opening a portion of the south-central area of Malheur Lake, adding a new boat launch at headquarters, and by opening the Buena Vista Unit. 

PENNSYLVANIA: Firearms Preemption Legislation Needs Your Active Support Now
House Bill 1523 and Senate Bill 1438 would strengthen Pennsylvania's firearms preemption law to further ensure firearm and ammunition laws are uniform throughout the state. However, the anti-gun extremists are pulling out the stops trying to stop this pro-firearm legislation.  On March 27, anti-gun Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter and Mayors Against Illegal Guns (MAIG) member, along with other MAIG members and other anti-gun mayors were at the state Capitol trying to rally opposition to common sense firearms legislation that will keep law-abiding gun owners from becoming criminals.

SOUTH CAROLINA: Pro-Gun House Bills Moving in the Palmetto State
House Bill 3665 and House Bill 4494 are continuing to make progress in Columbia.  HB 3665, which would remove the "melting point" standard was amended on second reading to include language allowing concealed handgun permittees to carry in a restaurant provided they are not drinking alcohol and passed by an 83 to 7 vote on March 28.  HB 4494, which would allow for long gun purchases to and from non-contiguous states passed on its third reading by a 102 to 1 vote on March 28 and will be sent to the state Senate for its consideration.

TENNESSEE: NRA-Backed Safe Commute and Employee Protection Bills Advance out of Senate Committees
On March 27, Senate Bill 3002, the NRA-initiated Safe Commute Act, passed in the Senate Judiciary Committee by a 6 to 1 vote, with two members voting to "pass" on the bill.  Senate Bill 2992, the Firearm Discrimination Prevention Bill intended to bolster the ultimate implementation of SB 3002, passed in the Senate Commerce Committee by a vote of 6 to 3.  Both of these important bills will soon be sent to the Senate floor for a vote.

TEXAS: Use of Lawfully-Owned Suppressors While Hunting Legalized
On March 29, after hearing your support for this NRA-backed common sense hunting reform, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission voted unanimously to legalize suppressor use while hunting.  The benefits associated with suppressor use include increased accuracy due to reduced recoil and muzzle blast, protection from hearing damage and reduced noise pollution. 

VIRGINIA: Planning Process Underway for James River National Wildlife Refuge
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is writing a new management plan for the James River National Wildlife Refuge which is located along the James River in Prince George County, eight miles southeast of Hopewell and thirty miles southeast of Richmond. The 4,325-acre refuge is open to deer hunting.  The USFWS is inviting public comments to help shape management decisions on the refuge for the next fifteen years. Once a plan is drafted it will be made available for public review and comment.  The Service has identified several preliminary issues, concerns, and opportunities, including the amount and distribution of public use.  If you want to become involved in the planning process, you may submit comments to fw5rw_evrnwr@fws.gov.  Please include "James River CCP" in the subject line.  For further information you may call Meghan Carfioli, the Planning Team Leader, at 804-829-5413.

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